Previous month:
April 2010
Next month:
June 2010

Woooohooooo! And also - EEEEEEK!

    Yesterday I found out that a friend and I have been accepted in a juried art festival that takes place at the end of June.  We'd submitted our application, but frankly I wasn't holding out much hope.  This is the Michigan Challenge Balloonfest, a three-day shindig involving hot air balloons, an art festival, carnival, music, you name it.  Average attendance is around 100,000 each year.  That's a lot bigger than the shows I'm used to doing, you know?  One or two days, and if you're lucky you'll see two or three hundred people - that's what I've got experience handling.  So, as I said, I wasn't holding my breath.  After I got the phone call, I was all "WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!  Yeah!  We made it!  We got in!!!!  WOOOOHOOOOO!!!"   I went to my friend's house and we did a little happy dance together, and then I took off to take care of some business.

Then I came home.  I came home and I looked at my inventory (and I'm being kind by using that word, it's more like "pathetic little heap of stuff") and I looked at my beads, and I thought about how much time I have between now and the show, and...well.  Then I FREAKED OUT.  EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEK!!!  How in the world am I ever going to put together enough for a three day show with that kind of attendance in the next five or six weeks?   What if I run out of supplies?  What if I get total brain-block and can't come up with anything that doesn't look like a five-year-old made it?  What if I make all this cool stuff and I'm so wigged out that I don't do a good job on the finishing and everything falls apart five minutes after people buy it, and then they all come back and yell at me and want their money back?  ARGGGGGHHHH!!!! 

.....deep breath....

    Today I'm just trying to calmly think through what I have, what I may need, and come up with some design ideas.  I've been spending time with my beads lately anyway, so I do at least have a few pieces ready.  I've got some ideas bouncing around in my head that should be pretty nice, if they work the way I think they will. Hubby and kids are on board and excited for me, so I know I can get more than the usual help with housekeeping, etc.  And it looks like the weather is finally - finally - becoming truly spring-like, instead of taunting me with one day of beautiful followed by four or five days of yuck.  A beautiful sunny day is good medicine for me, no matter what's going on. 

So if I disappear for a few weeks, just send some creative thoughts my way, okay?  I'll be buried in beads, muttering to myself about color choices and balance and where did my crimpers go THIS time?   I can use all the "artsy" vibes you can spare! 

The delicate balance

When we moved to Michigan almost three years ago, our primary focus in househunting was to find a house that wasn't a "fixer-upper".  We'd been there, done that for 13 years in Indiana, and darling husband was more than ready to spend his time at home relaxing instead of fixing ____________.  So we bought a house that was in really good shape, fairly recently built, and settled down. 

When we went shopping for vehicles, our position was a little different.  We weren't looking for new and shiny (or even necessarily shiny, to be honest).  We just wanted something reasonably reliable, for the lowest price we could find.  And that is exactly what we got.   The whole arrangement has worked pretty well for us until this spring.

In the last six weeks, we have had to replace:  the clutch and one of the front struts on the Pontiac Vibe,  front brakes and rotors on the Olds, and wheel bearings, bushings and a tie-rod end on the Buick.  In addition, the Olds still needs new bearings and some other stuff.   Oh, and new tires for the Vibe too.  Jon has done all the work himself, with some assistance from the boys (and me when I can't get out of it), and we figure he's saved us close to $1,000.00 by taking on these tasks. 

  Obviously I don't want things to go wrong with the house.  But I'm getting a little tired of things going wrong with the cars.  Where is the balance?  At one point, even through we own three vehicles, we didn't have a single one that was drivable!  Fortunately we're (mostly) done with all the urgent issues, but sheesh....

So here's my thought: next time we go househunting, we're not going to be so resistant to looking at houses that need a little TLC.  And the next time we go car-hunting, I want something that is younger than my children.  Honestly, if we're going to put time, money and effort into something, I'd much rather it be our house!  It's a much more lasting endeavor.  Plus, when we're working on the house, I can actually help Jon with some level of confidence.  Drywall?  Sure!  Shingles?  Why not?  If he's under the car, though, about all I'm good for is squeaking "Don't get hurt!"  Not much that's useful about that.